Referral systems are a common marketing strategy, often employed by service companies. This is why it is not really surprising if you are thinking about using referrals to grow your physical therapy practice. Understand that these systems can either be straightforward or complex – the choice is really up to you. In this article, you will find out exactly how to set up a referral system and make it work for you.
How to Use a Referral System in Your Physical Therapy Practice
Physical therapy is a service-oriented practice which means that you will have constant interaction with the people you are treating. This presents an opportunity that makes a referral system perfect to extend your practice. For one thing, you will have the chance to truly become close with your clients, creating a therapist-patient bond. This helps validate the quality of your practice should a referral system be implemented. Simply put, your clients handing out referrals will be able to give honest, accurate, and believable comments on your professional expertise. With this kind of word-of-mouth-marketing, it would not be hard for potential clients to remember your name and seek you for their therapy needs.
What is a Referral System?
There are two types of referral systems: straightforward and complex. A straightforward system involves providing your current clients with an incentive every time they refer a new person to your practice. A complex system typically involves emails, tracking, and electronic programs. Complex referral systems are often used when promoting products online, as in the case of Amazon affiliates.
Your physical therapy practice can actually use both, depending on the kind of coverage you want. Here are some approaches that you can try out:
This may involve simply encouraging your current clients to bring in people for physical therapy, upon which they’d receive some perks. It can be anything from a free session to a discount on their next session. Gyms also have this “buddy” system where current members can bring someone with them to the gym for free for a limited amount of time in the hope of encouraging the “buddy” to join in eventually. This is a technique you can also incorporate in your physical therapy practice.
If you’re servicing a large area, you can also use the internet to launch your referral system. Typically, this involves placing ads in strategic locations, providing links where potential clients can go through. It could also involve getting more sophisticated and using professional physical therapy marketing materials and newsletters. Like with the straightforward system, referrals through the complex method are met with a reward.
Benefits of a Referral System
So what exactly can Physical Therapy referral systems do for you? Following are some of the marked benefits of having a referral system:
– It frees up your time, giving you the chance to devote more effort into other aspects of the practice for further growth.
– It fosters relationships with your clients, creating longer-lasting therapist-patient interaction
– Patients who have an emotional investment on their therapists are less likely to switch from one person to another
– Easy to set up, you’ll find that referral marketing systems don’t cost as much money as other marketing techniques.
– Referral systems are ongoing. This means that if patient A referred patient B, patient B may refer patient C and so on. Handled correctly and with the benefits constantly updated, the positive results may continue forward even with no excessive input on your part.
Will It Help Your Business Grow?
The short and simple answer is: yes. A system of getting physical therapy referrals will definitely help your business grow, giving you the chance to reach a wider aspect of the market. Even better, it actually improves your relationship with your clients since referrals are often linked together either as friends, relatives, or colleagues. You might find yourself becoming the official physical therapist of say – a whole team of tennis enthusiasts! Handled correctly, you’ll find that referrals might be the only marketing technique you’ll need to make your practice even more profitable.
When it comes right down to it, Physical Therapist referral systems may actually be the best marketing choice for therapists. With the on-hand kind of service provided through therapy, the referral of someone you trust is almost always a sure way to close a deal. This is exactly what the system encourages – for potential clients to visit your practice in the recommendation of someone they trust implicitly.